Tiger Woods Owes Golf… Nothing.

Below is a piece originally written for JOCKpost.com in April 2010 about Tiger Woods and what he has done for the game of golf.

I find it extremely curious how people are so quick to pass judgement on Tiger when his lifestyle and personal life really have nothing to do with him as a golfer. Throw in a fired caddie and a few untimely injuries, and the entire golf world is already writing off one of the greatest golfers of all time (and certainly the most financially influential of all time).

To put this in perspective, they are writing off and dismissing a guy who finished 4th in the Masters.  THIS YEAR. Ask 99 % of PGA Pro’s how a 4th at Augusta would look on their resume.

“But Nick, Tiger hasn’t won on Tour since 2009”

Save it.  He also finished 4th at Augusta in 2010. And 4th at the US Open at a brutally tough Pebble Beach course that ate most golfers up from day 1. Throw in a tie for 6th in November 2010 at the World Golf Championships and a Playoff 2nd at the Chevron World Challenge and you’ll start to see where I’m going with this…

Even in the worst “downswing” of his professional career, since his last win on Tour, Tiger Woods has managed to rack up three top 4 finishes in MAJOR CHAMPIONSHIPS along with over $2m in earnings.

Nearly every golfer on Tour would snap call these results in a heartbeat. Obviously Tiger isn’t happy with them (all he cares about is winning Majors) but to the rest of the golf world, they are nothing to be ashamed of. Yet for some reason, the vast majority of the media and general public suddenly hate the man they held on their shoulders just a few short years ago. Maybe it’s because Tiger set the bar so high spoiling us with his play from 1997-2009. Or, maybe it’s because the vast majority of people are judgmental hypocrites who like to latch on to the “Story of the Week” without actually thinking for themselves?! Think for yourselves people!!

Tiger Owes Field Nothing, They Owe Him Everything

Written by donniccolo | April 14th, 2010

Tiger Owes Field Nothing, They Owe Him EverythingIn 1996, the year before Tiger Woods forever blew up the game of golf as we knew it, the leading money winner on Tour was Tom Lehman with a whopping $1.78 million in winnings.

Not a bad year for most. That same year, the top 9 money winners earned over $1 million. In 10th place was David Duval at $977k.

1995 was very similar, with Greg Norman leading at $1.65m and Mark O’Meara in 10th at $914k. 1994 saw only the top 6 money winners over the $1m mark and in 1993 only the top 5 cleared the hurdle.

It only gets worse. In 1992 only 4 players topped a million and in 1991 nobody did! (although I’m sure Corey Pavin was happy pocketing $979k for the entire year!)

What amazes me about these numbers is how they pale in comparison to the paychecks players earn in the post-Tiger era and how Tiger rarely gets credit for making so many people filthy rich. In 1997, Tiger’s first full year on tour, he became the first golfer to top the $2m mark for the season.

As significant and shocking as this seemed at the time, what I find more interesting is that the entire top 10 earned over $1.2m, a figure barely reached 16 times in the history of the game prior to that point!

In 1998, the year after Tiger set the bar at $2m, three golfers eclipsed the $2m mark and Tiger wasn’t even one of them! I don’t think Tiger liked this as it started a streak of 4 straight years on top of the money list and 8 of the next 11.

Interestingly, Vijay Singh is the only other golfer to finish the year atop the money list during that span, doing so an impressive 3 times since David Duval held the crown in 1998.

In 1999, all hell broke loose and Tiger took the game and its paydays to levels no one could’ve imagined just a few years prior. Duval was still red-hot but was now the former #1 player in the world. The $3.6m he earned on the year was a nice consolation but was barely half of the $6.6m that Tiger earned! In just 3 years, the leading money winner had gone from $1.7m to $6.6m. That’s a 288% increase!

As if that weren’t enough, Tiger raised the bar again in 2000, earning a mind-boggling $9.1m, nearly doubling #2 Phil Mickelson’s $4.7m. Tiger managed to eclipse his record by nearly 40% (winning every major on the planet will do that for you) and the entire top 4 earned over $3m.

Not bad considering no one had ever eclipsed $3m just two years prior. As a matter of fact, since 2003 every golfer in the top 10 has earned over $3m.

From 2001-2009 the game and its prize purses have continued to grow, albeit not at 40% per year but at a level no one saw coming before Tiger Woods hit the scene. In 2002, Tiger and Phil were the only golfers who had passed the $4m mark in earnings and by 2009 nearly 20 different golfers had done so.

As of 2009, Vijay and Tiger remain the only 2 golfers to pass the $10m mark with Vijay setting the bar in 2004 at $10.9m and Tiger coming close in 2005, 2007 and 2009, surpassing $10m in each year. 2010 is shaping up to have lots of promise and either Tiger or Phil could give the $11m mark a run.

Phil certainly doesn’t mind that Tiger has inflated the tourney purses or that Tiger has apparently inflated half of south Florida.

“He doesn’t owe me an apology,” said Mickelson, who has enjoyed a heated rivalry with Woods at times over the years. “I don’t know if there’s been an individual who has capitalized more on the opportunities that he’s brought to the game of golf than myself.”

Phil Mickelson added, “He doesn’t owe me a thing.”

Below are the numbers.  It’s truly mind-boggling.

TOTAL PGA MONEY WINNINGS PER YEAR SINCE 1990

2009

1   Tiger Woods 17 $10,508,163
2   Steve Stricker 22 $6,332,636
3   Phil Mickelson 18 $5,332,755
4   Zach Johnson 25 $4,583,213
5   Kenny Perry 24 $4,445,562
6   Sean O’Hair 23 $4,316,493
7   Jim Furyk 23 $3,946,515
8   Geoff Ogilvy 20 $3,866,270
9   Lucas Glover 26 $3,692,580
10   Y.E. Yang 23 $3,489,516

2008

1   Vijay Singh 23 $6,601,094
2   Tiger Woods 6 $5,775,000
3   Phil Mickelson 21 $5,188,875
4   Sergio Garcia 19 $4,858,224
5   Kenny Perry 26 $4,663,794
6   Anthony Kim 22 $4,656,265
7   Camilo Villegas 22 $4,422,641
8   Padraig Harrington 15 $4,313,551
9   Stewart Cink 23 $3,979,301.00
10   Justin Leonard 25 $3,943,542

2007

1   Tiger Woods 16 $10,867,052
2   Phil Mickelson 22 $5,819,988
3   Vijay Singh 27 $4,728,376
4   Steve Stricker 23 $4,663,077
5   K.J. Choi 25 $4,587,859
6   Rory Sabbatini 23 $4,550,040
7   Jim Furyk 23 $4,154,046
8   Zach Johnson 23 $3,922,338
9   Sergio Garcia 19 $3,721,185
10   Aaron Baddeley 23 $3,441,119

2006

1   Tiger Woods 15 $9,941,563
2   Jim Furyk 24 $7,213,316
3   Adam Scott 19 $4,978,858
4   Vijay Singh 27 $4,602,416
5   Geoff Ogilvy 20 $4,354,969
6   Phil Mickelson 19 $4,256,505
7   Trevor Immelman 24 $3,844,189
8   Stuart Appleby 23 $3,470,457
9   Luke Donald 18 $3,177,408
10   Brett Wetterich 25 $3,023,185

2005

1   Tiger Woods 21 $10,628,024
2   Vijay Singh 30 $8,017,336
3   Phil Mickelson 21 $5,699,605
4   Jim Furyk 26 $4,255,369
5   David Toms 25 $3,962,013
6   Kenny Perry 23 $3,607,155
7   Chris DiMarco 24 $3,562,548
8   Retief Goosen 18 $3,494,106
9   Bart Bryant 26 $3,249,136
10   Sergio Garcia 20 $3,213,375

2004

1   Vijay Singh 29 $10,905,166
2   Ernie Els 16 $5,787,225
3   Phil Mickelson 22 $5,784,823
4   Tiger Woods 19 $5,365,472
5   Stewart Cink 28 $4,450,270
6   Retief Goosen 16 $3,885,573
7   Adam Scott 16 $3,724,984
8   Stephen Ames 27 $3,303,205
9   Sergio Garcia 18 $3,239,215
10   Davis Love III 24 $3,075,092

2003

1   Vijay Singh 27 $7,573,907
2   Tiger Woods 18 $6,673,413
3   Davis Love III 23 $6,081,896
4   Jim Furyk 27 $5,182,865
5   Mike Weir 21 $4,918,910
6   Kenny Perry 26 $4,400,122
7   Chad Campbell 27 $3,912,064
8   David Toms 26 $3,710,905
9   Ernie Els 17 $3,371,237
10   Retief Goosen 19 $3,166,373

2002

1   Tiger Woods 18 $6,912,625
2   Phil Mickelson 26 $4,311,971
3   Vijay Singh 28 $3,756,563
4   David Toms 27 $3,459,739
5   Ernie Els 18 $3,291,895
6   Jerry Kelly 29 $2,946,889
7   Rich Beem 30 $2,938,365
8   Justin Leonard 26 $2,738,235
9   Charles Howell III 32 $2,702,747
10   Retief Goosen 15 $2,617,004

2001

1   Tiger Woods 19 $5,687,777
2   Phil Mickelson 23 $4,403,883
3   David Toms 28 $3,791,595
4   Vijay Singh 26 $3,440,829
5   Davis Love III 20 $3,169,463
6   Sergio Garcia 18 $2,898,635
7   Scott Hoch 24 $2,875,319
8   David Duval 20 $2,801,760
9   Bob Estes 26 $2,795,477
10   Scott Verplank 26 $2,783,401

2000

1   Tiger Woods 20 $9,188,321
2   Phil Mickelson 23 $4,746,457
3   Ernie Els 20 $3,469,405
4   Hal Sutton 25 $3,061,444
5   Vijay Singh 26 $2,573,835
6   Mike Weir 28 $2,547,829
7   David Duval 19 $2,462,846
8   Jesper Parnevik 20 $2,413,345
9   Davis Love III 25 $2,337,765
10   Stewart Cink 27 $2,169,727

1999

1   Tiger Woods 21 $6,616,585
2   David Duval 21 $3,641,906
3   Davis Love III 23 $2,475,328
4   Vijay Singh 29 $2,283,233
5   Chris Perry 31 $2,145,707
6   Hal Sutton 25 $2,127,578
7   Payne Stewart 20 $2,077,950
8   Justin Leonard 28 $2,020,991
9   Jeff Maggert 23 $2,016,469
10   David Toms 32 $1,959,672

1998

1   David Duval 23 $2,591,031
2   Vijay Singh 26 $2,238,998
3   Jim Furyk 28 $2,054,334
4   Tiger Woods 20 $1,841,117
5   Hal Sutton 30 $1,838,740
6   Phil Mickelson 24 $1,837,246
7   Mark O’Meara 19 $1,786,699
8   Justin Leonard 28 $1,671,823
9   Fred Couples 17 $1,650,389
10   John Huston 25 $1,544,110

1997

1   Tiger Woods 21 $2,066,833
2   David Duval 29 $1,885,308
3   Davis Love III 25 $1,635,953
4   Jim Furyk 27 $1,619,480
5   Justin Leonard 29 $1,587,531
6   Scott Hoch 22 $1,393,788
7   Greg Norman 15 $1,345,856
8   Steve Elkington 17 $1,320,411
9   Ernie Els 19 $1,243,008
10   Brad Faxon 23 $1,233,505

1996

1   Tom Lehman 22 $1,780,159
2   Phil Mickelson 21 $1,697,799
3   Mark Brooks 29 $1,429,396
4   Steve Stricker 22 $1,383,739
5   Mark O’Meara 21 $1,255,749
6   Fred Couples 18 $1,248,694
7   Davis Love III 23 $1,211,139
8   Brad Faxon 22 $1,055,050
9   Scott Hoch 27 $1,039,564
10   David Duval 23 $977,079

1995

1   Greg Norman 16 $1,654,959
2   Billy Mayfair 28 $1,543,192
3   Lee Janzen 28 $1,378,966
4   Corey Pavin 22 $1,340,079
5   Steve Elkington 21 $1,254,352
6   Davis Love III 24 $1,111,999
7   Peter Jacobsen 25 $1,075,057
8   Jim Gallagher, Jr. 27 $1,057,241
9   Vijay Singh 22 $1,018,713
10   Mark O’Meara 27 $914,129

1994

1   Nick Price 19 $1,499,927
2   Greg Norman 16 $1,330,307
3   Mark McCumber 20 $1,208,209
4   Tom Lehman 23 $1,031,144
5   Fuzzy Zoeller 19 $1,016,804
6   Loren Roberts 22 $1,015,671
7   Jose Maria Olazabal 8 $969,900
8   Corey Pavin 20 $906,305
9   Jeff Maggert 26 $814,475
10   Hale Irwin 22 $814,436

1993

1   Nick Price 18 $1,478,557
2   Paul Azinger 24 $1,458,456
3   Greg Norman 15 $1,359,653
4   Jim Gallagher, Jr. 27 $1,078,870
5   David Frost 22 $1,030,717
6   Payne Stewart 26 $982,875
7   Lee Janzen 26 $932,335
8   Tom Kite 20 $887,811
9   Fulton Allem 28 $851,345
10   Fred Couples 19 $796,579

1992

1   Fred Couples 22 $1,344,188
2   Davis Love III 25 $1,191,630
3   John Cook 21 $1,165,606
4   Nick Price 26 $1,135,773
5   Corey Pavin 25 $980,934
6   Tom Kite 23 $957,445
7   Paul Azinger 23 $929,863
8   Brad Faxon 26 $812,093
9   Lee Janzen 32 $795,279
10   Dan Forsman 29 $763,190

1991

1   Corey Pavin 25 $979,430
2   Craig Stadler 21 $827,628
3   Fred Couples 21 $791,749
4   Tom Purtzer 25 $750,568
5   Andrew Magee 28 $750,082
6   Steve Pate 26 $727,997
7   Nick Price 23 $714,389
8   Davis Love III 28 $686,361
9   Paul Azinger 21 $685,603
10   Russ Cochran 30 $684,851

1990

1   Greg Norman 17 $1,165,477
2   Wayne Levi 23 $1,024,647
3   Payne Stewart 26 $976,281
4   Paul Azinger 26 $944,731
5   Jodie Mudd 23 $911,746
6   Hale Irwin 17 $838,249
7   Mark Calcavecchia 27 $834,281
8   Tim Simpson 26 $809,772
9   Fred Couples 22 $757,999
10   Mark O’Meara 25 $707,175

Source: http://www.pgatour.com/r/stats/info/?109

Tiger Owes Field Nothing, They Owe Him Everything: http://jockpost.com/tiger-owes-field-nothing-owe-him-everything/#ixzz1T9UsUkyX

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About donniccolo

Logic. Common Sense. Open Minds. www.nicknicastro.com
This entry was posted in Common Sense, Finance, Miscellaneous, Sports and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Tiger Woods Owes Golf… Nothing.

  1. Pingback: Tiger Woods Is Back! Let’s Not Forget What He’s Done For The Game Of Golf. | logical thinking in an illogical world

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